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9-69.000
PROTECTION OF GOVERNMENT PROCESSES

9-69.010 Introduction
9-69.100 Protection of Government Processes—Obstruction of Justice
9-69.200 Perjury and False Declarations Before Grand Jury or Court—Prosecution Policy
9-69.300 Prison Offenses (18 U.S.C. § § 1791-1793)
9-69.400 Fugitive Felon Act—18 U.S.C. § 1073
9-69.420 Prerequisites to Issuance of Federal Complaint in Aid of States
9-69.421 Parental Kidnapping
9-69.422 Unlawful Flight Warrants for Juvenile Offenders
9-69.430 Unlawful Flight to Avoid Custody or Confinement After Conviction
9-69.440 Unlawful Flight to Avoid Giving Testimony
9-69.460 Federal Information; Indictment; Removal—Approval Required
9-69.500 Escape from Custody Resulting from Conviction (18 U.S.C. § § 751 and 752)
9-69.502 Escape from Custody Resulting from Conviction (18 U.S.C. § § 751 and 752)—Prosecution Policy
9-69.600 Escape from Custody Resulting from Civil Commitment (28 U.S.C. § 1826(c))

9-69.010

Introduction

This chapter focuses on the investigation and prosecution of federal criminal offenses that interfere with the federal justice system. These offenses include obstruction of justice, perjury, escape, and unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. See the Criminal Resource Manual at 1720

[updated February 1998]

9-69.100

Protection of Government Processes—Obstruction of Justice

The obstruction of justice statutes include 18 U.S.C. §§ 1501, 1503, 1505, 1510-1513, and 1516-1520. Generally, obstruction of justice offenses fall under the supervisory responsibility of the Division and Section of the Department having responsibility for, or expertise in, the basic subject matter. For example, obstruction of an investigation into health care fraud would fall under the supervision of the Fraud Section of the Criminal Division; obstruction involving violence against a witness would fall under the supervision of the Gang Unit of the Criminal Division; obstruction of a gambling investigation would fall under the supervision of the Organized Crime and Racketeering Section of the Criminal Division; and obstruction of a public corruption investigation or a congressional proceeding would fall under the supervision ofthe Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division.

If such responsibility cannot be identified, supervisory responsibility rests with the Fraud Section of the Criminal Division.

See the following sections of the Criminal Resource Manual for a more detailed discussion of the law on each of these statutes:

Obstruction of Justice—Scope of 18 U.S.C. § 1503 Criminal Resource Manual at 1721
Pending Proceeding Requirement—18 U.S.C. § 1503 Criminal Resource Manual at 1722
State of Mind Requirement —18 U.S.C. § 1503 Criminal Resource Manual at 1723
Omnibus Clause— 18 U.S.C. § 1503 Criminal Resource Manual at 1724
Obstruction of Pending Proceeding— 18 U.S.C. § 1505 Criminal Resource Manual at 1725
Scope of 18 U.S.C. § 1505 Criminal Resource Manual at 1726
Obstruction of Federal Criminal Investigation —18 U.S.C. § 1510 Criminal Resource Manual at 1728
Tampering with Victims, Witnesses, or Informants—18 U.S.C. § 1512 Criminal Resource Manual at 1729
"Official Proceeding" Requirement— 18 U.S.C. § 1512 Criminal Resource Manual at 1730
State of Mind— 18 U.S.C. § 1512 Criminal Resource Manual at 1731
Constitutionality— 18 U.S.C. § 1512(d) Criminal Resource Manual at 1732
Scope of 18 U.S.C. § 1513 Criminal Resource Manual at 1733
State of Mind— 18 U.S.C. § 1513 Criminal Resource Manual at 1734
Obstruction of Health Care Investigations— 18 U.S.C. § 1518 Criminal Resource Manual at 1735
Inchoate Obstruction of Justice Offenses Criminal Resource Manual at 1736
Civil Action to Enjoin the Obstruction of Justice—18 U.S.C. § 1514 Criminal Resource Manual at 1737
Venue Criminal Resource Manual at 1738
Offenses Related to Obstruction of Justice Offenses Criminal Resource Manual at 1739
Other Research Aids Criminal Resource Manual at 1740
[updated July 2009] [cited in Criminal Resource Manual 1455]

9-69.200

Perjury and False Declarations Before Grand Jury or Court—Prosecution Policy

Several Federal statutes criminalize perjury and related false statements. The two most commonly used statutes for perjury offenses are 18 U.S.C. §§ 1621 and 1623. The prior authorization of the Criminal Division is required for investigations or prosecutions of perjury before Congress and contempt of Congress. See also USAM 9-90.550. Additionally, United States Attorneys are required to consult with the Criminal Division before instituting grand jury proceedings, filing an information, or seeking an indictment of an individual for perjury committed during a trial that resulted in acquittal. In all other perjury cases, no prior authorization or consultation is required.

Generally, perjury offenses fall under the supervisory responsibility of the Division and Section of the Department having responsibility for the basic subject matter. If such responsibility cannot be identified, or if the Division/Section with jurisdiction over the basic subject matter does not have criminal prosecutive responsibilities, i.e., certain civil litigation sections, supervisory responsibility rests with the Fraud Section of the Criminal Division. For information on investigative responsibility, see the Criminal Resource Manual at 1742.

For an overview of the law on perjury and false declarations, including §§ 1621 and 1623, and sample indictments, see the following sections of the Criminal Resource Manual:

Perjury and False Declarations Before Grand Jury or Court Criminal Resource Manual at 1741
Perjury—Overview of 18 U.S.C. §§ 1621 and 1623 Violations Criminal Resource Manual at 1743
Elements of Perjury Criminal Resource Manual at 1744
Elements of Perjury—Federal Proceeding Under Oath Criminal Resource Manual at 1745
Elements of Perjury— Making of a False Statement Criminal Resource Manual at 1746
Elements of Perjury—Specific Intent Criminal Resource Manual at 1747
Elements of Perjury— Materiality Criminal Resource Manual at 1748
Comparison of Perjury Statutes—18 U.S.C. § 1621 and 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1749
Comparison of Perjury Statutes—18 U.S.C. § 1621 and 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1750
Comparison of Perjury Statutes—18 U.S.C. § 1621 and 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1751
Subornation of Perjury Criminal Resource Manual at 1752
Special Problems and Defenses—Evasive and Unresponsive Answers Criminal Resource Manual at 1753
Special Problems and Defenses—Venue Criminal Resource Manual at 1754
Special Problems and Defenses—Charging Considerations Criminal Resource Manual at 1755
Special Problems and Defenses—Perjury Trap Criminal Resource Manual at 1756
Special Problems and Defenses—Collateral Estoppel Criminal Resource Manual at 1757
Special Problems and Defenses—Immunity Criminal Resource Manual at 1758
28 U.S.C. § 1746 Declarations Criminal Resource Manual at 1759
28 U.S.C. § 1746—Unsworn Declarations under Penalty of Perjury Criminal Resource Manual at 1760
Sentencing Issues Criminal Resource Manual at 1761
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1621 (first paragraph) Criminal Resource Manual at 1762
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1621 (second paragraph) Criminal Resource Manual at 1763
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1622 Criminal Resource Manual at 1764
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1765
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1766
Sample Indictment— 18 U.S.C. § 1623 Criminal Resource Manual at 1767

9-69.300

Prison Offenses (18 U.S.C. § § 1791-1793)

The Office of Enforcement Operations has supervisory responsibility for these statutes.

An overview of federal prison offenses, including possession of contraband, providing contraband to another, trespassing, and rioting, is contained in the following sections of the Criminal Resource Manual:

Introduction Criminal Resource Manual at 1768
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(1) Criminal Resource Manual at 1769
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(1)—"Prison" Criminal Resource Manual at 1770
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(1)—"Contraband" Criminal Resource Manual at 1771
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(2)—"Prison" Criminal Resource Manual at 1772
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(2)—"Possess or Provide" Criminal Resource Manual at 1773
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1791(a)(2)—"Contraband" Criminal Resource Manual at 1774
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1792—"Participation" Criminal Resource Manual at 1775
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1792—"Mutiny or Riot" Criminal Resource Manual at 1776
Elements— 18 U.S.C. § 1792—"Federal penal, detention, or correctional facility" Criminal Resource Manual at 1777
Double Jeopardy Criminal Resource Manual at 1778
Knowledge of Warden Criminal Resource Manual at 1779

[cited in Criminal Resource Manual 1455]

9-69.400

Fugitive Felon Act—18 U.S.C. § 1073

Though drawn as a penal statute, and therefore permitting prosecution by the Federal government for its violation, the primary purpose of the Fugitive Felon Act is to permit the Federal government to assist in the location and apprehension of fugitives from state justice. No prior Criminal Division approval is required to authorize unlawful flight complaints in aid of the states. However, the statute expressly requires "formal approval in writing" by a designated Department official before a UFAP violation can be actually prosecuted in federal court. See USAM 9-69.460. For information regarding use of a grand jury to locate a fugitive, see USAM 9-11.120.

Since the primary purpose of the Act is to assist the states in apprehending fugitives from state justice, the Act should not be applied to the interstate or international flight of federal fugitives.

For further information on the Fugitive Felon Act, see the Criminal Resource Manual at 1780. See also the Criminal Resource Manual at 1782 (Unlawful Flight Warrants—Post Arrest Procedures), and 1785 (Unlawful Flight to Avoid Service of Process).

[updated February 1998] [cited in Criminal Resource Manual 1039; 1786; 1962]

9-69.420

Prerequisites to Issuance of Federal Complaint in Aid of States

A complaint for violation of the Fugitive Felon Act should not be authorized unless there is probable cause to believe that the fugitive moved in interstate or foreign commerce with the intent of avoiding a felony prosecution under the laws of the place from which he fled. In addition, it should be clear that the requesting state authorities are determined to take all necessary steps to extradite or otherwise secure the return of the fugitive, and that it is their intention to bring him to trial on the state charge for which he is sought.

In considering requests for issuing complaints under the Act, care should be exercised to prevent use of the Act to assist in enforcement of any state statute with a clearly discriminatory purpose or in the discriminatory application of an otherwise lawful statute. Similarly, caution should be exercised to prevent use of FBI investigative resources to compel discharge of civil obligations. Thus, requests for federal involvement in worthless check violations, or in desertion/non-support cases should be scrutinized carefully.

[cited in USAM 9-69.421]

9-69.421

Parental Kidnapping

State requests for the filing of unlawful flight complaints in felony parental abduction cases are to be treated in the same manner as other unlawful flight requests. See USAM 9-69.420 for additional policy guidance on unlawful flight complaints. See USAM 9-74.200 and the Criminal Resource Manual at 1781 for additional information regarding international parental kidnapping.

[updated March 2001] [cited in USAM 9-2.112; Criminal Resource Manual 1039; 1781; 1962]

9-69.422

Unlawful Flight Warrants for Juvenile Offenders

A state juvenile delinquency charge does not provide a basis for obtaining an unlawful flight warrant because a juvenile proceeding involves an adjudication of status, not a felony prosecution. However, if a juvenile is charged, as an adult, with a state felony offense, a UFAP warrant may be sought. In such situations, the UFAP complaint must charge an act of juvenile delinquency (unlawful flight) under 18 U.S.C. § 5032.

[updated January 1998]

9-69.430

Unlawful Flight to Avoid Custody or Confinement After Conviction

Selective handling by United States Attorneys will obviate indiscriminate use of the Fugitive Felon Act to locate parolees who have simply failed to report to the parole board or failed to notify the parole board of a change of address. See the Criminal Resource Manual at 1783 for more information on this topic.

[updated February 1998]

9-69.440

Unlawful Flight to Avoid Giving Testimony

The majority of states have adopted the Uniform Act to Secure the Return of Witnesses From Without the State in Criminal Cases. Therefore, a state should be required to exhaust existing remedies for securing the return of witnesses before seeking Federal assistance. See the Criminal Resource Manual at 1784 for more information on this topic.

[updated February 1998]

9-69.460

Federal Information; Indictment; Removal —Approval Required

The Fugitive Felon Act requires formal approval in writing by the Attorney General, Deputy Attorney General, Associate Attorney General, or Assistant Attorney General before initiating a prosecution for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution, or custody or confinement after conviction, or to avoid giving testimony. Accordingly, under no circumstances should an indictment under the Act be sought nor an information be filed nor should removal proceedings under Rule 40, Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, be instituted without the written approval of the Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Division. See H.Rep. No. 827, 87th Cong., 1st Sess. (1961), reprinted in, 1961 U.S.Code Cong. & Ad. News, 3242; United States v. McCord, 695 F.2d 823 (5th Cir.), cert. denied, 460 U.S. 1073 (1983). Requests for written approval to prosecute for unlawful flight should be forwarded to the Policy and Statutory Enforcement Unit using the form at Criminal Resource Manual 1786. Generally, such requests are approved only if it clearly appears that the interests of justice would be frustrated by a failure to prosecute. See the Criminal Resource Manual at 1782.

[cited in USAM 9-2.112; USAM 9-11.120; USAM 9-69.400]

[updated October 2008]

9-69.500

Escape from Custody Resulting from Conviction (18 U.S.C. § § 751 and 752)

An overview of the laws relating to escape from custody resulting from conviction can be found in the below-listed sections of the Criminal Resource Manual. The Office of Enforcement Operations has supervisory responsibility for these statutes. The U.S. Marshals Service shall has investigative jurisdiction over the federal escape statutes.

In the event that a federal escapee becomes a subject of an ongoing FBI substantive investigation, the FBI will seek the fugitive's apprehension in coordination with the U.S. Marshals Service.

Escape From Custody Resulting from Conviction (18 U.S.C. §§ 751 and 752)— Introduction Criminal Resource Manual at 1801
"Escape from Custody" Define Criminal Resource Manual at 1802
Elements of the Offense of Escape from Custody—Generally Criminal Resource Manual at 1803
Elements of the Offense of Escape from Custody —Intent Criminal Resource Manual at 1804
Elements of the Offense of Escape from Custody—Attempt Criminal Resource Manual at 1805
Aiding and Assisting Criminal Resource Manual at 1806
Conspiracy Criminal Resource Manual at 1807
Constructive Custody Criminal Resource Manual at 1808
Institution or Facility in Which Confined— Generally Criminal Resource Manual at 1809
Legal Custody by Attorney General Criminal Resource Manual at 1810
Expeditious Authorization of Magistrates' Complaints and Warrants in Federal Escape Cases — Case Authority Criminal Resource Manual at 1811
Venue in Furlough and "Walkaway" Cases Criminal Resource Manual at 1812
Prosecution of Escapes by Federal Prisoners Who Have Been Surrendered to the Temporary Custody of State Authorities Pursuant to State Court Writs of Habeas Corpus Ad Testificandum and Ad Prosequendum Criminal Resource Manual at 1813
Defenses—Generally Criminal Resource Manual at 1814
Defenses—Double Jeopardy Criminal Resource Manual at 1815
Defenses—Duress Criminal Resource Manual at 1816
Defenses—Intoxication Criminal Resource Manual at 1817
Defenses—Insanity Criminal Resource Manual at 1818
Defenses—Lack of Mental Capacity Criminal Resource Manual at 1819

[cited in USAM 9-69.600]

9-69.502

Escape from Custody Resulting from Conviction (18 U.S.C. § § 751 and 752)—Prosecution Policy

As a result of decisions handed down by the United States Supreme Court, it is clear that warrants are required to enter premises to arrest escapees from federal custody under 18 U.S.C. § 751 in all cases except where consent or exigent circumstances exist. It is clear from these decisions that in some cases an arrest warrant coupled with a reasonable belief that the escapee is in the premises is sufficient for a lawful entry. As a result of these decisions, discussed more fully in the Criminal Resource Manual at 1811, and in order to provide federal law enforcement officers with all available legal process for the accomplishment of arrests of federal escapees, prosecutors are instructed that in all federal escape cases the issuance of a magistrate's complaint and arrest warrant should be authorized promptly upon completion of the investigation and presentation of the matter to the United States Attorney's Office by the agency involved. Many local law enforcement agencies will not assist in the search for federal escapees if there is no arrest warrant for the escapee. Thus, by promptly issuing the arrest warrant, prosecutors will insure the full cooperation of local law enforcement agencies in the search for and apprehension of the escapee.

Authorization of a complaint and arrest warrant should not be deferred until after apprehension of the escapee. Reevaluation of the prosecutive merit of the individual escape case in which a complaint is authorized may be made after the escapee has been apprehended. At that later time, prosecutors may determine that the case does not merit proceeding further and dismiss the complaint, or the escapee may be indicted within thirty or sixty days, 18 U.S.C. § 3161(b), depending on the availability of a grand jury, and proceed with the prosecution. However, by prompt authorization of the issuance of a magistrate's complaint and warrant, prosecutors will make available to the enforcement agencies legal process which will be sufficient to permit entry into private premises.

9-69.600

Escape from Custody Resulting from Civil Commitment (28 U.S.C. § 1826(c))

An overview of the law relating to escape from custody resulting from civil commitment can be found in the below-listed sections of the Criminal Resource Manual. The Office of Enforcement Operations has supervisory responsibility for this statute. The U.S. Marshals Service has investigative jurisdiction over the federal escape statutes. In the event that a federal escape becomes the subject of an on-going FBI substantive investigation, the FBI will seek the fugitive's apprehension in coordination with the U.S. Marshals Service. See USAM 9-69.500.

Further guidance on this topic is available from the Criminal Resource Manual

Escape from Custody Resulting from Civil Commitment (28 U.S.C. §1826(c))— Introduction Criminal Resource Manual at 1820
Congressional Intent Criminal Resource Manual at 1821
Elements of the Offense of Escape from Custody Resulting from Civil Commitment (28 U.S.C. § 1826(c)) Criminal Resource Manual at 1822
Elements of Offense (28 U.S.C. § 1826(c))—Intent Criminal Resource Manual at 1823
Elements of Offense (28 U.S.C. § 1826(c))—Custody Criminal Resource Manual at 1824
Elements of Offense (28 U.S.C § 1826(c))—Commitment Criminal Resource Manual at 1825
Defenses—Generally Criminal Resource Manual at 1826